This week’s article idea came to me after talking with one of my most favorite tree lovers and tree huggers in the Richmond Area (Anna Aquino). I can’t remember how we got into the conversation, but we started to talk about the benefits of dead trees, dead limbs, and also leaving dead limbs on the ground.
Anna introduced me to a website from The Cavity Conservation Initiative: https://cavityconservation.com/ Their mission is to encourage the safe retention of dead and dying trees as habitat for cavity-nesting birds and other wildlife. Here is a quote from the group’s Director, Gillian Martin: “When we haul away a dead tree needlessly, we take away half its life’s destiny.” I’m not sure if it was Anna’s passion or just the word destiny, but I have started to look at trees a little differently.
Before I go on, I wanted to give you my disclaimer: Not all dead trees or dead limbs should remain. Dead trees and limbs can harm people or property. A certified arborist who is tree risk-assessment-qualified can help you decide if your tree, or part of your tree, poses an unacceptable risk because of targets.
So, when appropriate, here are just a few reasons for leaving some dead limbs, snags, and dead trees for wildlife:
I’d love to hear your stories of dead trees or dead tree-parts you have left and observed on your
property. Feel free to email me with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org